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The Study Hub Blog is the home for study skills resources and support with student life for all taught students at the University of Edinburgh, from first year Undergraduates to taught Postgraduates.
Top picks: Study spots  

Top picks: Study spots  

Sofia is an undergraduate Economics student. This post highlights her favorite study spots at the University.  

Let’s get one thing straight, the library gets it job done. Its location is spot on, it’s open 24/7, and, unless it’s finals season, you’re likely to find a seat. Looking back, during the first semester of my first year I was hesitant to explore other study spots and spent a lot of time at the library.    

Little did I know, however, that this was not the smartest way to study. A vast amount of literature suggests that learning environments can highly impact the effectiveness of our studies and learning experience [1]. Moreover, recent research suggests that studying in multiple locations can have positive effects on student performance. [2] This is mainly due to a concept called contextual variation, which states that learning in various locations can improve recall later [3]. 

By the start of the second semester, I was determined to switch up my study game, but I didn’t really know where to start. I tend to prefer studying in academic environments, so while Soderberg, Union Brew Lab and the many other coffee shops filled with students seemed like the perfect place for a study break I didn’t entirely feel they met my study needs.  

 During my second year, I came across some study spots in central campus that have changed the quality of my study sessions. The following are some of my favorite academic-friendly study spots to settle into a productive mindset and work away on your coursework, readings, or midterms.  

 50 George Square: 

  • Floors 1 – 4 have a couple tables and study pods where you can sit, in a group or by yourself, and get some work done. 
  • Bear in mind that the opening hours of 50 G.S are 9am – 5pm.    


50 George Square library: 

  • This library gets a lot of natural light, and it is usually a lot less crammed than the central library. 

40 George Square library:

  • You can find your way here by taking a right as soon as you walk into 40 G.S. Even though it is only open from Mondays to Fridays it spans over multiple floors housing various atmospheres. 
  • Note: It is also known as the New College Library. 

 Well-being Lounge:

  • Right next to Potterrow, you can find this hidden gem. It has a breathtaking view of McEwan Hall and tends to be a quiet place to get some work done.  
  • The tables usually have coloring books and pencils to color the stress away. 

Study Spaces specific to Schools and Colleges:

  • Not all schools have them, but make sure to check in with your school and find out if they have a hub. These are great spaces to meet your course mates and work on group projects.  


At the end of the day, everyone’s study needs are unique [4]. I suggest you choose a space where you can focus, feel comfortable, and can study effetely on your assignments.  

Reference list: 









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